President Duterte pledges new arms, equipment to the military to counter terrorism, ensure people's safety

PILI CAMARINES SUR, Sept. 21 (PIA) – Stressing anew the importance on the role of the government armed forces in the safety and development of the nation, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte promised support for the military in form of new arms and equipment.  

“I will give you everything you need, just give me a good and safe republic to live in”, said President Duterte, during his visit today at Camp Elias Angeles in Pili, Camarines Sur.  

The visit in Camarines Sur is part of the President’s continuing effort of boosting the moral of members of the government armed services in being one with him in his drive against criminality and terrorism.  

Camp Elias Angeles in San Jose of Pili municipality is the home of the Philippine Army’s 9th Infantry Division, also known as the Spear Troopers.  

On his speech this afternoon in front of the troops, President Duterte reiterated his want of not having another incident like the Davao City bombing last September 2. He also stated that the armed forces should learn from what happened in Davao City and, by now, should be experts in identifying a terrorist.  

The President also said that, in the face of the danger the military has to deal with nowadays, he will not let them go to battle ill-armed. He promised that he will provide the all troops the necessary weaponry, starting with sidearms they requested.

  “I was told that the 9mm pistols you have is not enough. If you’re in the military, you should have a 40-caliber. Well, that’s fine,” said Duterte.  

According to the President, he did receive that particular request, with which he will grant. “I will give you all sidearms. I will give you all Gloc30s,” he said, which elicited applause from the soldiers in attendance.  

However, the President stated that he will not forsake the military as long as they perform their mandate of protecting the nation. In terms of the terrorism issue, he again stressed his plan of never entering into any negotiations and fully eliminating the Abu Sayaff group.  

As per the administrations on-going campaign against illegal drugs, President Duterte requested the military to remain vigilant as the Philippines is not alone in dealing with drug menace in Asia.  

The President mentioned that, based in his conversation with President Joko Widodo, Indonesia supports the anti-drug efforts in the Philippines as their country has 4 million citizens ‘contaminated’ by illegal drugs.  

Here in the Philippines, the President said that even was surprised on how heavy the drug problem already is.   “I did not know the country’s drug problem was so widespread,” he said.  

“Whether you will make a move or not, it’s up to you… (But) illegal drugs will destroy your children and the next generations,” said the President.

  “This affects my country, which is also your country, so this is our problem to resolve,” he added. (MAL/JBE-PIA5)